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Older brains slower due to knowing so much

Posted on Wednesday, 22 January, 2014 | Comment icon 47 comments

Do our brains slow down because they are storing too much information ? Image Credit: CC 2.0 Andrew Mason
An older person takes longer to remember things because their brain contains so much information.
It was long believed that as a person gets older they have a more difficult time remembering things due to the cognitive decline of their brain, but now scientists have revealed that it is more likely to be down to the simple fact that the older you are, the more information you have stored in your head.

"The human brain works slower in old age but only because we have stored more information over time," said Dr. Michael Ramscar. "The brains of older people do not get weak. On the contrary, they simply know more."

The effect is being likened to that of a computer with a full hard drive - data takes longer to access than on a computer with more free space.

"Imagine someone who knows two people’s birthdays and can recall them almost perfectly," said Dr Ramscar. "Would you really want to say that person has a better memory than a person who knows the birthdays of 2000 people, but can ‘only’ match the right person to the right birthday nine times out of ten?"

Source: Telegraph | Comments (47)

Tags: Brain.Memory

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #38 Posted by shaddow134 on 25 January, 2014, 16:37
Sounds like a load of speculation to me,in my experience,I found that older people who remain active both physically and mentally don't have a problem remembering anything.
Comment icon #39 Posted by Sakari on 25 January, 2014, 16:42
I meant to reply to this a long time ago....... We do not have a hard time, we just do not care to answer, or discuss things as much as we used to.
Comment icon #40 Posted by Eldorado on 25 January, 2014, 17:00
I meant to reply to this a long time ago....... We do not have a hard time, we just do not care to answer, or discuss things as much as we used to. Try to lose the anger, Sak.... Give your good lady or oldest daughter a big hug. (I say that in kindness, sir)
Comment icon #41 Posted by Sakari on 25 January, 2014, 17:07
Try to lose the anger, Sak.... Give your good lady or oldest daughter a big hug. (I say that in kindness, sir)
Comment icon #42 Posted by Realm on 26 January, 2014, 2:55
I keep my brain defragged, works o.k for me.
Comment icon #43 Posted by Sakari on 26 January, 2014, 3:15
Just because one is "old" is no guarantee that they "know a lot". I used to say that about my elders before I became older and wiser......
Comment icon #44 Posted by spud the mackem on 26 January, 2014, 10:28
When you're young you think that you're invincible, nothing bad can happen to you,but as you get older and wiser or more experienced in life,you realise that you are just as vunerable to danger as the next guy.How many times will you escape death by seconds.My count is 5..
Comment icon #45 Posted by Still Waters on 26 January, 2014, 11:35
When you're young, old people look really old and you can't ever imagine yourself being that old. When you reach old age you look back and wonder where the years went as you don't feel any different now to how you felt when you were young. Different people also have different views on what age is classed as old.
Comment icon #46 Posted by Frank Merton on 26 January, 2014, 11:44
I'm old enough to be able to tell the old lady sitting on the park bench next to me who pulls out an album of her grandkids to get lost.
Comment icon #47 Posted by Stardrive on 26 January, 2014, 17:56
Ask the oldest member of your family for the loan of a ten-spot! I betcha they will remember. My older brother and sister can squeeze a penny so hard it makes Lincoln cry.

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